Thank you all for the wonderful Clergy Appreciation “shout out” in the LNP during Pastor Appreciation Month! It was a complete surprise, which made me smile. I was the only Presbyterian on the page – which gives me “bragging rights” at the next Presbytery Meeting! The note accompanying the picture said, “Thanks for the great Sunday mornings!” The feeling is mutual, believe me. It is a distinct honor for me to serve in my capacity at Bethany. You are an amazing congregation, full of energy and imagination. So, thanks again for the honor – I sincerely appreciate it!
I love eastern falls! I experienced my first one when I was stationed at the U.S. Army Intelligence School at Fort Holabird, Baltimore, MD. I arrived from Southern California in September of 1970 (the Orioles won the series that fall) and left in February the following year. Up to that point, I had never lived outside Southern California, a place where “fall weather” is just like any other season, but not as hot. Oh, the nights get colder, of course, and the trees do shed their leaves, but, by-and-large, there isn’t really much change. Not so in Maryland, though. While I was at the school, I sang in the choir at First Presbyterian Church in downtown Baltimore. I’d take the bus in from Ft. Holabird on Thursday evenings and Sunday mornings, get off at the sports arena downtown, and walk up the eight blocks on Madison St. to First Presbyterian. The choir was made up of 16 paid singers from Peabody Conservatory. I was the (unpaid) 17th, and the only Californian! But, they made me feel welcome. James Winship Lewis was the Organist/Choirmaster at the time, and he put us through our paces. It was an exhilarating experience! As the fall progressed and the nights and mornings grew increasingly colder, I questioned the wisdom of singing at First Pres. And, when the first snow hit at the end of November, I really had second thoughts! But, I stuck it out, and I was glad I did. When folks say that “fall is in the air” that’s really true. You do feel it, especially when you’ve never experienced it before. There’s a “crackle” in the air when there’s frost on the ground. There’s an energy, a vibrancy, which is hard to describe to the west coast crowd. I believe that God is shaking us out of our lethargy, and into a new awareness that we live in a world that is constantly changing, constantly evolving. God’s world is dynamic, not static, and the seasons of the year bear witness to God’s work in the world. God invites us to take notice of our surroundings and celebrate the unfolding mystery of God’s handiwork in our midst. So, button up your overcoat and celebrate the fall which is upon us. Let it work its magic on you, and give thanks to God that you are alive!
From Pastor Kent’s Desk
Grace & Peace, Kent
Bethany Presbyterian Women will hold their annual Christmas Sale on Saturday, November 10, 2018 from 8am-12pm. The sale will include such holiday items as decorations, artificial trees, wrapping paper, bows, ribbons, ornaments, lights and more. The Boy Scouts will also be holding an All You Can Eat Breakfast that morning as well. Adults $8, kids age 6-12 $4, 5 and under are free. Please come out and support the Presbyterian Women and Boy Scouts.
The Deacons will be providing Thanksgiving Baskets for needy families. Family size varies, thus, the amount of food is different. For example, a basket for a family of four would be $50. To provide baskets this year, the Deacons are requesting monetary donations now through November 18. Specially marked envelopes are in the pew racks. Checks are to be made out to: “Bethany Presbyterian Deacons” & noted for Thanksgiving Baskets. Cash is also welcomed. We appreciate your help in making this outreach possible.
It’s Stewardship Season once again at Bethany Presbyterian Church! Time to focus on the financial health of our congregation as our 2019 Stewardship Campaign gears-up. Through Minutes For Stewardship, letters, and personal testimonies, we will have the opportunity to examine our financial goals for the year 2019. We pray that you will open your hearts and minds as we look to the future of our congregation.
Our dedicated “Sunday Morning Counting Team” has a request. They need our assistance to make their work less cumbersome and more efficient. We hope you, our members, will do your part to make their request a reality: For those individuals who contribute to multiple funds with your weekly offering, we would appreciate it if you would write separate checks for each of the funds to which you are contributing. Do not combine the funds into one check (Likewise with cash.) If you do, beginning in November, the aggregate amount will be deposited into the General Fund and not into the individual accounts. Writing separate checks will enable us to facilitate our counting, thus making our work more efficient. Your generous gifts are important to us! They enable the ministry and mission of Bethany Presbyterian Church to continue unabated. Thus, we want to make certain that each gift goes to the fund for which it is intended. Your cooperation in this matter is greatly appreciated! Thank you all very much!
Sincerely in Christ,
Gary Peters, Elaine Bornstein, Jean Schwartz, & Sylvia Doyle